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27909: Lemieux-News-American: Haiti Leader Must Perform (fwd)

jd lemieux   lxhaiti@yahoo.com

American: Haiti Leader Must ?Perform?
Staff and agencies
18 February, 2006

By STEVENSON JACOBS, 14 minutes ago

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti - Opponents of Haiti?s
president-elect could use the country?s disputed
election result to try and weaken his government
"if he doesn?t perform," the top American
diplomat in Haiti said Saturday.

The move gave Preval the 51 percent of the vote
he needed for outright victory, drawing angry
complaints from his two nearest rivals, neither
of who polled close to Preval?s numbers in the
Feb. 7 vote.

"If he doesn?t perform, yes it weakens him,"
Carney said during an interview with The
Associated Press at his residence. "If he does
perform, nobody will remember it."

If Preval had fallen short of a majority, he
would have faced a March runoff against the
second-place finisher, Leslie Manigat.

Baker said Friday that declaring Preval the
winner without a runoff "presages a somber future
for democracy in Haiti."

Haitians, meanwhile, waited to hear how Preval
plans to deal with violence, poverty and his
stance on his former ally, Jean-Bertrand
Aristide, who is living in exile in South Africa
after being ousted as president by a violent
rebellion two years ago.

Preval has not said whether he would allow
Aristide to return, a move Carney acknowledged
some of Preval?s supporters may expect.

Maryse Narcisse, Aristide?s spokeswoman, declined
to say whether Aristide and Preval were in

"I think the elections confirmed that Aristide is
a man of the past, unlikely to have any role in
Haiti?s future," he said.

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